Enjoy spring in Kashmir for better relations: Mehbooba

Mumbai, March 17 (IANS) Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Friday urged people from rest of India to visit the state and “enjoy the spring” and its natural beauty to better connect with the border state.

Speaking at the India Today Conclave here on the issue of federalism and whether states are being maltreated by the centre, Mufti said that her state’s condition is peculiar from the rest of the country for it lies on the border.

“In a democracy you need to respect the mandate of the people… we are lagging behind because of the difficulties of being a border state,” she said.

On being asked by the moderator, senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai, if she wanted to invite people to come and invest in her state and if the Article 370 was a hindrance in doing that, Mufti replied people should come to state anyway for tourism and not just for investment.

“It’s not about Article 370, not many of you would know that even Maharashtra too has this article. I want you to come with your family to enjoy the spring here… and move about anywhere, you would feel like (as you would in) your home,” she said.

She said that India was not just a country but a “universe to us” for its diversity.

“We need to make our place in it… (but) regional aspirations should also be given a chance to be realised,” Mufti said, adding that she hasn’t had any problems securing funds for the state from centre so far.

— IANS

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